Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

DEBATE

Gaza: A Truce At All Costs?

Read more

AFRICA NEWS

Central African Republic: Brazzaville ceasefire talks deliver fragile deal

Read more

FOCUS

Sluggish tourist season in Crimea

Read more

ENCORE!

Bartabas : Mixing Christ with Spanish music and dancing horses

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

Shifts in the propaganda war waged between Israelis and Palestinians

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

French MPs face quandary in pro-Palestinian rallies

Read more

THE INTERVIEW

Yezid Sayigh, Senior Associate at the Carnegie Middle East Center in Beirut

Read more

#TECH 24

Mind the Gender Gap : getting more women into the tech sector

Read more

INSIDE THE AMERICAS

Bolivian children: heading to work aged 10

Read more

  • Live: ‘No survivors’ from Algerian plane crash, says Hollande

    Read more

  • Protest against Gaza offensive turns deadly in West Bank

    Read more

  • Wreckage of Algeria plane found in Mali

    Read more

  • Deadly strike on UN shelter in Gaza Strip

    Read more

  • BNP to pay $80 million for defrauding Dept of Agriculture

    Read more

  • Pope meets Christian woman sentenced to death in Sudan

    Read more

  • Air Algérie crash: 'We should eliminate the missile hypothesis'

    Read more

  • Italy’s Nibali cruises to victory in 18th stage of Tour de France

    Read more

  • Iraqi parliament elects moderate Kurd as president

    Read more

  • US, European agencies lift travel restrictions to Tel Aviv

    Read more

  • No end to fighting until Israel ends Gaza blockade, Hamas says

    Read more

  • Two foreign women shot dead in western Afghanistan

    Read more

  • At least 60 killed in attack on prison convoy near Baghdad

    Read more

  • Cycling is ‘winning the war on doping,’ says expert

    Read more

Africa

Trapped journalists freed from Tripoli hotel

Video by FRANCE 24

Text by News Wires

Latest update : 2011-08-24

International journalists who had been held in Tripoli's Rixos Hotel for five days by armed men loyal to Muammar Gaddafi were freed Wednesday afternoon. The journalists were evacuated by the Red Cross to another hotel in the city.

AP - International journalists were freed from the Rixos Hotel on Wednesday after being held for five days by armed men loyal to Moammar Gadhafi.

The dozens of journalists were taken in Red Cross cars and vans to another Tripoli hotel, where they hugged friends and colleagues, many crying.

The International Committee of the Red Cross was talking to loyalist forces about the journalists’ safety on Wednesday when they were suddenly informed that Gadhafi’s men were ready to release them.

“We were able to gather everyone in four cars, no problem,” said George Comninos, the Red Cross’ head of delegation in Tripoli. “Of course, it was still a tense situation.”

The journalists had been held at gunpoint by two nervous Kalashnikov-wielding guards who refused to give up their posts despite rebel victories elsewhere in the city.

Earlier in the day, an Associated Press reporter who entered the hotel found the journalists wearing helmets and flak jackets, clustered on the second floor, where a guard said they weren’t permitted to leave.

Other journalists showed up at the gate, including a group in a car decorated with a rebel flag, and were forced out of the car and into the hotel, where they joined the dozens who had been there for days.

Those who had been held captive inside the hotel described running battles in the area, and intermittent electricity.

They were sleeping huddled on the floor in one wing of the hotel to protect each other for fear of people being attacked in their rooms, their belongings packed in case of need for a sudden departure.

Save for the two guards, all the hotel employees had fled and the journalists were cooking for themselves. One guard expressed surprise when told most of the city was in rebel hands.

Parked in front of the hotel was the bus once used by government minders to ferry journalists around the city, on its windshield was a huge poster of Gadhafi, one of the only ones apparently left in the city.
 

Date created : 2011-08-24

  • LIBYA

    Gaddafi forces halt rebel advance on road to Sirte

    Read more

  • LIBYA

    France and allies seek to unlock Libyan assets at UN

    Read more

  • LIBYA - FRANCE 24 EXCLUSIVE

    Rebel leader outlines transition timetable

    Read more

COMMENT(S)